Personalized Medical Photoprotection: Determining Optimal Measures for Susceptible Patient Groups

Salvador González1, *, María Victoria De Gálvez2, Magdalena De Troya3, Azahara Rodríguez-Luna4, 5, *, Piergiacomo Calzavara-Pinton6
1 Department of Medicine and Medical Specialties, Alcalá de Henares University, Madrid 28805, Spain
2 Photobiological Dermatology Laboratory, Department of Dermatology and Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, Medical Research Center, University of Málaga, Málaga, Spain
3 Dermatology Department, Hospital Costa del Sol, Marbella, Spain
4 High Performance Research Group in Physiopathology and Pharmacology of the Digestive System NeuGut-URJC, Department of Basic Health Sciences, Faculty of Health Sciences, Campus de Alcorcón, Universidad Rey Juan Carlos, Alcorcón, Spain
5 Department of Pharmacology, Faculty of Pharmacy, Universidad de Sevilla, Seville, Spain
6 Department of Dermatology, University Hospital “Spedali Civili”, Brescia, Italy

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Creative Commons License
© 2023 González et al.

open-access license: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Public License (CC-BY 4.0), a copy of which is available at: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/legalcode. This license permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

* Address correspondence to this author at the Department of Basic Health Sciences, Faculty of Health Sciences, Universidad Rey Juan Carlos, Alcorcón, Spain; E-mail: azahararodriguezluna@gmail.com



Increasing knowledge regarding the deleterious effects of sun exposure and the mechanisms of photodamage has enabled the development of tailored photoprotection strategies based on skin type and the existence of underlying conditions. Dermatologists play an essential role as they identify the specific skin photoprotection needs of their patients. This translates into specific recommendations of suitable protection measures, both in terms of the length and time of the day these patients can be exposed to the sun and the use of sun protection products.


Our purpose was to overview optimal photoprotection strategies for patients with dermatological pathologies or alterations. Methods: Increasing evidence supports the use of sunscreens containing not only organic and inorganic filters but also non-filtering biological ingredients that can enhance sunscreen protection efficacy. Examples of these biologicals are DNA repair enzymes, antioxidants including vitamins and other biological agents, including those of botanical origin.


Oral photoprotection is also an area of increasing interest that contributes to an integral protection against sun-related alterations.


This article provides the skin care specialist with a simple, easy-to-use guide to identify appropriate measures for patients presenting pathologies or conditions requiring specific sun protection needs, including (but not limited to) photodermatoses (polymorphic light eruption, porphyrias); inflammatory dermatoses (atopic dermatitis, rosacea, psoriasis); pigmentation disorders (hyperpigmentation, vitiligo), photoaging, skin pre-cancerous lesions and cancers, and photosensitive or sensitized skin (patients undergoing specific drugs treatments or skin-related procedures), ensuring the choice of personalized protection for susceptible groups within the general population.

Keywords: Photoprotection, Sunscreens, Organic filters, Inorganic filters, DNA repair enzymes, Antioxidants.